Using Your Strengths at Work

In an earlier post, Coming from a place of strengths, I wrote about my experiences taking the strength-finder quiz at least two times in my life. Two years later, I am reflecting on my strengths once again. Today I’m wondering how I am using my strengths at work.

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Around 2005, my strengths were:

  • Strategic
  • Input
  • Learner
  • Achiever
  • Self-Assurance

In 2013, my strengths were:

  • Learner
  • Input
  • Achiever
  • Deliberate
  • Strategic

After you take the quiz, the results are generated and shared with you in a report that explains each strength in more detail. The order of the words is important- almost from strongest to least.

As I look over my two lists, it makes me happy that Learner moved into the top spot the second time I took the quiz. I always consider myself a learner (see my very first blog ever!) and in 2013 I was in my doctoral program, living a student life (while working full time!). In my new job, I am most definitely a learner- as I learn a new district, new schools, new staff members, and a new culture.

The Input strength has always connected to Learner for me. Rath and Conchie describe, “People strong in the Input theme have a craving to know more. Often they like to collect and archive all kinds of information” (p.191). I am a collector of words, ideas, books, articles, and information to be read and learned!

Achiever is accurate in the drive I have to reach my professional goals. I seek out new opportunities, and then I work to make them a reality. I work hard to achieve the success I have. However, because I am an introvert, you will not usually find me shouting about my own successes from rooftops. I like to achieve with a team, celebrate together, and receive praise as a team or in private. I do not enjoy, nor do I seek out, public recognition for every achievement.

Between my two quizzes, Self-Assurance disappeared and Deliberate appeared. I think this transition nicely captures my transition from being a new site principal to being a district leader with many more years of experience. I have always had confidence in my abilities at work, but the longer I have been a leader, the more I recognize how much more there is to learn. I have become much more deliberate in my actions, and even more so with my spoken words. “With time comes wisdom,” or so they say.

Strategic was once my number one strength and now it is my fifth. I don’t think I have become any less strategic in my work, but I think that over time I have learned how to facilitate strategic discussions with others. I have worked hard to build capacity in those around me, so that I am not making decisions in isolation. I have done this strategically!

As I reflect on my strengths, according to Rath and Conchie, I recognize how I am able to use them within my current work. Is there room for improvement? Always!

I think it is just as important for me to get to know the strengths of those with whom I work, to better tap into their strengths in our collaborations. We are better collectively than we are alone.

 

What are your strengths?

How do you use your strengths at work? 

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About Amy's Reflections

Director of Educational Services in Southern CA, taking time to reflect on leadership and learning
This entry was posted in Leadership and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Using Your Strengths at Work

  1. Pingback: Turning Talents into Strengths | Reflections on Leadership and Learning

  2. Pingback: [Abecedary of Reflection] Belief | Reflections on Leadership and Learning

  3. Pingback: Organizing Resources to Share | Reflections on Leadership and Learning

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